Marine Corps receives favorable financial audit opinion

23 Dec 2013 | Cpl. Chelsea Flowers Anderson

The Marine Corps has received an “unqualified,” or favorable, opinion on a recently completed independent audit of its FY 2012 Statement of Budgetary Activity.

The Department of Defense’s inspector general rendered the opinion Dec. 20, 2013, as part of the mandate by Congress for the Department of Defense to produce fully audited financial statements by 2017.

An unqualified opinion is the gold standard for audit opinions and is granted only when the auditors have reasonable assurance that the statement fairly presents the budget activity for the reporting period in all material respects.

The Marine Corps is the first military service to undergo this type of audit.

A favorable opinion is an important step in audit readiness for the Department of Defense.

“This year’s financial report demonstrates our dedication to assure the public that we are efficient and prudent stewards of the nation’s resources entrusted to us,” said Ann-Cecile M. McDermott, fiscal director for the Marine Corps.

The report did, however, identify weaknesses for the Marine Corps to correct in order to improve its financial management, and many of these initiatives are already underway.

“We may have done well on the first one, but we have to repeat this,” said Lt. Col. Jared Hansbrough, deputy of the accounting branch at Headquarters Marine Corps. “We’re happy to be where we are, but we recognize we have a lot of work to do as we move forward.”

Marines, their weapons and equipment account for only 8.2 percent of the total Department of Defense FY 2012 budget, but that still delivers the ability to respond to crises – from humanitarian-assistance and disaster-relief efforts to noncombatant evacuation operations to counter-piracy operations, as well as full-scale combat.

“The outstanding results of the FY12 financial statement audit demonstrate the Marine Corps' commitment to improving our stewardship of the scarce resources entrusted to us by the American people,” said Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. James F. Amos. “We are the first service to have successfully completed this congressionally mandated audit.  I could not be more proud of our entire team ... Bravo Zulu!"

Link to FY12 Financial Report

Headquarters Marine Corps